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County Supervisor pushes for new mental health facility

Posted at 6:16 PM, Mar 25, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-25 21:16:56-04

San Diego (KGTV) There’s a battle over prime real estate in Hillcrest. There were plans to use the Third Avenue location for luxury housing, but some county leaders are hoping to use the space as a way to serve the homeless dealing with mental health challenges.

Over a decade ago, the location once served as a center for adolescents. The county had plans to use the 7-acre lot for luxury condos.

“I don’t believe that the public policy changes we face as a region is a shortage of luxury condos,” says County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher. “I believe the public policy challenge we face as a region is an investment in behavioral health services.”

The vacant space on Third Avenue sits less than a mile from Scripps Mercy Hospital and UCSD Medical Center, Hillcrest.

“We have 50 to 100 patients in our emergency rooms every day that need some form of mental health services,” says Patty Maysent, CEO of UC San Diego Health.

The facility would offer services like psychiatric care and substance abuse.

“A lot of folks go to the emergency room, get the most expensive care, get stabilized, and they have nowhere to go,” said Fletcher.

The County Board of Supervisors will vote on the proposed site on Wednesday.